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Diary of an On-call Girl: True Stories from the Front Line

Diary of an On-call Girl: True Stories from the Front Line [Kindle Edition]

EE Bloggs
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

PC Bloggs is a serving British police office and Diary of an On-call Girl is a true account of her working life.

"The tapes are on, the interview begins, and I ask my standard opening question: ‘Do you understand why you have been arrested?’
Believe it or not, sometimes these words alone can prompt a confused confession.
‘I ain't been arrested,’ says Shimona.
Not exactly a confession.
‘Well, you have, because you’re here.’
‘I was never arrested, though. No-one never put no handcuffs on me.’
I put down my pen. Somehow, I don’t think this is going to be the level of interview for which I need to make notes. ‘You actually don’t need to be handcuffed to be under arrest,’ I say.
‘Yeah, I do. Right, Sonia?’
Sonia nods emphatically. ‘You do need it, me Ma said so.’
In an attempt to steer the interview back on track, I look down at PC Cansat’s statement. ‘Look, it says here, “I then said to Shimona O’Milligan, ‘I am arresting you on suspicion of assault and criminal damage.’ I cautioned her to which she replied, ‘Whatever’.” Does that ring any bells?’
Shimona titters. Then she gets serious again. ‘Does he say he handcuffed me, though? Cos he’s a liar.’
‘No, he says he arrested you.’
‘Well, I wasn’t listening.’
‘This may surprise you,’ I say, ‘but you can be arrested even if you aren’t listening.’
‘No, you can’t. Not if you’re inside a house. I know the law.’
If there is one thing I like more than a gobby teenager, it is a gobby teenager who knows the law.
‘Shimona, you are going to have to take my word for the fact that you were brought here under arrest and you are still under arrest now. Let’s move on.’

Diary of an On-Call Girl was serialised on BBC Radio 4 and is currently in TV development with scripts being written by the writer of the hit TV comedy Rev.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1954 KB
  • Print Length: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Monday Books (15 Dec 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #53,619 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
37 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The female PC David Copperfield 14 Sep 2007
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
So funny; I sat and giggled the entire time I was reading it (i.e. in the bath, drying my hair, trying to cook - which is not easy with a book in your hand..... My partner, who is not in the police, looked at me like I had gone quite mad. She's got the ridiculousness of the job spot on. And don't think she's kidding about the bureaucratic hoops we have to jump through - she's not.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Modern day policing 8 April 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
If you're wondering why the police don't have time to deal with your stolen car or stolen wallet then read this book. By demanding targets and accountability and a paper trail we tie the police up in knots so that they spend too much time covering their backs and filling in forms rather than catching criminals.

Which is better - having the odd thing go wrong without being able to attribute it to an individual and having a higher detection rate and quick response times; or being able to work out what happened when and who was responsible and fewer crimes detected and having to wait a week for the police to respond to your call? I know which I prefer and I would say stop having so many people checking what's going on and more people doing the job they're trained to do.

When you've read the book you will start wondering how we got from the only record being the beat bobby's pocket book to forms in triplicate and about twenty people checking on what one person is doing. There are laugh out loud funny episodes in this book but there are also episodes which will make you tear your hair out in frustration. There are shades of almost any big organisation in this book and I know I found myself nodding my head in recognition over some of the procedures.

I recommend this book to anyone who wants to know what being a police officer in twenty first century Britain is all about.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Roll on the sequel! 7 Oct 2007
"I am a woman", Bloggs reminds us self-deprecatingly and with a knowing wink - but this is a book for everyone. Wise, witty, and stingingly accurate.

Employing a recurring cast of police teammates and community misfits, WPC Bloggs anatomizes various elements of the police job. The episodic chapter structure moves between interrelated episodes and settings. For example, the "Missing" features people missing at three progressively more serious levels. "Crap Car" is particularly amusing, dealing with ongoing police enquiries from habitual callers. There's a revelatory chapter on how rape is handled at local police level: "Sex, Lies, and CCTV".

Both subjects and tone darken towards the end of the book, but comedy pervade the pacy narrative. Bloggs's unremitting sarcasm and satire are well served by the naturalistic dialogue. At times I laughed out loud, other times shouted "Oh, no!" in frustration.

Best of all, it provides insight into our postmodern society. Footling paperwork, teethgrinding phone/fax/email contacts and the soulkilling "targets" culture are things which proceed beyond the police on which Bloggs trains her perceptive lens.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very funny 25 Dec 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Anyone interested in the Police will find this a very funny, useful, informative book - certainly hasn't put me off applying for a special role though..
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Trace Too Much 29 Dec 2008
Having read the foreward and noted all 11 reviews to date had awarded a 5 star rating, my expectations were high. The first few chapters started well and I found myself chuckling like the other reviewers. However, the more I got into the book, the more repetitive it became. For sure the levels of bureaucracy, procedural madness and political correctness beggar belief, but just how many anecdotes and examples do you need to make the same point. Additionally the irony and sarcasm is laid on so thick it starts to become monotous and tiresome in the extreme. By halfway I didn't really care if Bloggsy would get it on with Will, if the Perils would ever see their day in court or if the weedkiller would ever arrive at Blandmore nick. I stuck with the book 'til the end, hoping it would improve again, but wish I hadn't. To be fair the book delivers what it promises, which may explain the high ratings, but for me all the chapters morphed into one and were completely interchangeable. If the book was half the length, then I'd probably double my rating.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly embarrassed me on the train... 22 Nov 2007
as I sniggered loudly to myself, causing people to look at me warily from the corners of their eyes.

Whether you're into police-type stories or not, this is a very amusing book and rather a good insight into the way the police force "works". Or so I've been told. I'm not an officer, but I certainly found this enlightening.

I have a healthy respect for people who stay in the Force and battle on, despite all the madness.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Breathtakingly funny 25 Sep 2007
This insightful book has a wry, quintessentially British wit, put to terrific use exploring a subject - modern policing, with all its inanities - that is both topical and fascinating. It works on an episodic style where each chapter contains one or two hilarious and/or troubling anecdotes, tied neatly together with a colourful set of recurring characters and a loose plot.

Like all the best comedy 'On-Call' can reduce you to absurd giggles but never quite forgets the seriousness of the issue at hand. What have we come to when we are training police officers to fight crime then obliging them to spend all their time filling in forms and chasing arbitrary targets? But the sarcastic writing style ensures it never gets too preachy or depressing, and even offers occasional glimpses of sanity and hope. If anyone at the Beeb or elsewhere is listening, this should be your next hit sitcom.

I would recommend this book to anyone who really needs to laugh at the absurdities of modern life.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Very good book
Published 8 days ago by Escapology
5.0 out of 5 stars easy reading
entertaining a revealing as you hear police complaining of paper work and you don't see them on the street. Short chapters making it easy to read
Published 20 days ago by Peter Ludek
1.0 out of 5 stars Boring
I bought this book thinking it would be an interesting and humourous insight into the working life of a female police officer, but, it was just someone griping continuously about... Read more
Published 1 month ago by NightReader
2.0 out of 5 stars Review
Would of liked a few more policing stories but found it funny and I guess that was the ironic point.
Published 2 months ago by Graham Vidler
5.0 out of 5 stars Insight into modern police and methods
Really enjoyed this book funny sad thought provoking the time past really quickly when I was reading a great escape thanks
Published 3 months ago by Elizabeth Kate Maynard
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best books I have ever read
No books make me laugh out loud, until I read this! Brilliant, funny book. Could t put it down. I hope there is a sequel, highly recommended! x
Published 4 months ago by Claire
3.0 out of 5 stars Not just a diary book
I got this when I was going through a stage of reading an awful lot of diaries. This is different in that it shows a bit of the woman behind the uniform.
Published 4 months ago by mmmppph
5.0 out of 5 stars It would be funny if it wasn't all true
Every word of this is true. If I have one complaint it would be that Ellie doesn't go far enough to expose the politicization of the Police service today. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Flightcrew
3.0 out of 5 stars Quite an interesting book
Not as funny as I was hoping but good value for the money gets a bit bogged down with police procedures at times but not bad none the less.
Published 4 months ago by William UK
4.0 out of 5 stars Ms Gadget?
Interestingly written and, I suspect, true. Which is a big worry for all of us. Read it and then worry.
Published 5 months ago by Jon
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Modern policing is a bizarre, twilight zone: one part George Orwell, one part Franz Kafka and one part Trisha. &quote;
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